Gluten-Free Hazy IPA May 19 2021, 0 Comments

I'm out of hoppy beers at home, so it's time to brew another hop bomb. Up next, my first hazy IPA, which I'm calling Sultan of Penryn. Brewed with Sultana (Denali) hops and Verdant IPA yeast (from a brewery in Penryn, Cornwall), it's not my most creative name ever, but I guess it's an improvement from my previous beer, which was affectionately called Munich Dunkel...

I'm trying out a few new things this batch, including:

  • Flaked quinoa - Hoping this will add some body, head retention, haze, and nutty sweetness to the beer.
  • Flaked oats - I've used flaked oats in the past, but it was when I was brewing gluten-full beer. I got some GF rolled oats from the store. I'm hoping to get a little conversion because of the enzymes, but I'm not totally sure how these will contribute to the beer.
  • Sultana hops - I'm really looking for a pineapple character from the hops, and the research pointed to this hop.
  • Verdant IPA - Never tried this yeast, but from what I've heard, this'll make a solid IPA that will stay hazy.
  • Shorter mash - I've been doing 90-120 minute mashes and getting really fermentable worts. I'm going to shorten this to 75 minutes to see if I get a little more body, head retention, and a touch of residual sweetness.

The Recipe

  • 7lb Pale Millet Malt
  • 4lb Pale Rice Malt
  • 2lb Flaked Oats
  • 2lb Flaked Quinoa
  • 1lb Biscuit Rice Malt
  • 2lb Rice Hulls
  • 2oz Azacca Hops (whirlpool) 
  • 3oz Sultana (Denali) (whirlpool)
  • 3oz Azacca Hops (dry hop)
  • 5oz Sultana (Denali) dry hop)
  • 1 pack Verdant IPA dry yeast
  • 1 tsp Wyeast Beer Nutrient (10 min)
  • 20g Ondea Pro brewing enzymes (mash)
  • 15g Ceremix Flex brewing enzymes (mash)
  • Phosphoric Acid (1 tsp mash, 1/2 tsp sparge)
  • 3 gallons reverse osmosis water

The Mash

I added 1 tsp. Phosphoric Acid to the mash to lower the pH a bit.  

This was one of the smoothest mashes I've done. Nailed my target temperature of 162, mashed for 75 minutes, sparged at 170-175, and hit the pre-boil target volume of 7.5 gallons right on the dot.

Pre-boil gravity was 1.053, which should translate into a post-boil gravity in the low 1.06x range, which is exactly what I was going for. Not much else to say, sometimes boring is good!

The Boil

One of the easier boils I'll ever do. The only addition during the boil was yeast nutrient at 10 minutes. I skipped the kettle finings because I want this beer to be hazy anyways.

I added the whirlpool hops right away after turning the heat off and got a good recirculation going. After 10 minutes, I turned off the pump and let everything settle for 10 minutes. Then I put the chiller in and cooled the beer down to 65F.


Post Boil

Fermentation was uneventful, dry-hopped with a ton of hops, cold crashed the beer, and threw it into the keg.

A couple things that stood out at kegging time was how murky the beer was. It really looked like some milk had been added. I think I underestimated the amount of protein in the quinoa. So not the most visibly attractive beer, although I think most hazy IPAs look pretty gross anyways.

Second, the hop burn was very pronounced. I had done a lot of reading about hop burn and hazy IPAs, and I was somewhat confident that I had not overdone the hopping schedule (compared to a lot of other recipes and articles I had read). I'm not so confident about that now :(

Final Verdict

I'll give this beer a little more time in the keg, but it may be my first gluten-free dumper. The hop burn is just not dissipating enough to make this beverage pleasant to drink. I'll check it in another month or so, when I may need an empty keg, but I think I definitely learned my lesson regarding the hop schedule / choice.

Disappointing, but I guess if every batch was perfect, the hobby wouldn't be as fun. Ok, that may not be true, but it's what I'm telling myself right now...

Lessons Learned

  • Time to start really digging into water chemistry! This the next frontier I really would like to add to the brewing process. I have a general understanding of water chemistry, but I would like to take it up a notch or two...
  • I need a new hose. It's basically a coiled up kink. Early birthday present for me!
  • I can get away with a LOT less quinoa. So much protein!
  • The hop schedule was pretty ridiculous and made the beer just about undrinkable. If I try to make a hazy again, probably cut it by a good 30% and concentrate on hops with really high oil content.

Up next is another Sabro Cream Ale!